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Old 06 February 2004, 15:25   #1
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Do you service your own outboard

Hi all just wondering how many of us service our on engines, when I got my engine new went to the dealer to have the 1st service done, went to collect the boat later that day to find the engine cover on the ground paint side on the concrete paint scratched, did not make me happy, done my own services ever since, I always service my own cars and enjoy doing it, and I have the workshop manual for my engine, and the service details are pretty simple, so why do the dealers charge so much, If any of you guys do your own what points you you attend to, with me its new spark plugs, if it moves grease it, drain carb float chambers, clean fuel filter, general look over the engine for loose or rubbing wires and anything that dont look right, change the gearbox oil, take the prop off grease splines refit, good spray of engine block with WD40, what do you do???


Regards nick.
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Old 06 February 2004, 17:10   #2
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Nick, they are not in a service industry, they are out there to make money, lots of it from you and me to pay there mortgages and buy big expensive boats.

Only a couple of things I could think of for your list. Check the water pump in the leg, about half an hour of work and the thermostats in the head which can clog with salt even when flushed with fresh water each time.

Pete
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Old 06 February 2004, 17:27   #3
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I've only ever been around old tech two strokes which are relativly easy to service on a DIY basis. Plugs, lubrication, etc.

The water pump Impeller should be checked but I'm not sure about how often. My experiance with outboards and motorcycles has always been that no matter how careful you are, the more often you lossen and tighten threads cut in Alloy they will strip out sooner or later, and unless you keep a stock of inserts and the relavent taps etc you are in trouble.

How many of us can hand on heart say we grease the propshaft splines at every service, even though we know we should?

OK, how about spares, I always have in the boat a spare prop, several shear pins, spare plugs, tape, cable ties, a small tool kit and a host of other small items that make me think I can at least bodge the engine up enough to get home. What do you carry?

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Old 06 February 2004, 18:18   #4
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I used to service my old Suzuki 50 Ė 1983 model, wasnít really anything to it. Serviced a F9.9 Yamaha for a few years too, that was really nice to work with. Everything came apart so easily and you could get parts off the shelf from the local dealer Ė unlike the Suzuki; most things took 6 weeks to ship from Japan!

Nahser, its interesting you mention regular loosening and tightening of bolts. Iíve always had mixed feelings about this Ė if you donít take things apart regularly they always corrode and you end up drilling the dam bolts out. On the hand, as you say, regular tightening wrecks the threads.

Now I have a four stroke Iím slightly wary of doing anything. If you look at what should be checked during an annual service itís turns in to quite a big job; checking valves, fuel injectors etc. I do make sure I give the power head a good wash down after each use and cover it with the Quicksilver wax spray stuff. It amazing how much salt gets under the cowling! The prop shaft gets a regular greasing too.

Spares is an interesting topic Ė just received my new waterproof spares bottles. Got to try and fill them up now.
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Old 06 February 2004, 21:17   #5
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I've met very few people I trust enough to service any of my engines.
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Old 07 February 2004, 03:56   #6
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Get them to come....

to you. I use a local chap who offers a mobile service. I always arrange a time when I'm going to be around to watch over him. Then, when he turns up I ply him with bacon sandwiches and cups of tea whilst standing right there with him whilst he's doing the job, asking questions, passing him tools, you know - just passing the time of day. By doing this I've found he's a lot more disciplined and mathodical, furthermore I get to learn a lot about the engine. Finally, I prefer to get someone else to do it only because if they strip a thread, snap something etc it's down to them to put it right where as, if I did it I'd only end up calling someone in to fix it. £60.00 plus parts for a 70hp Yam 2-stroke.
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Old 08 February 2004, 12:21   #7
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If anybody wants a service manual for their Merc/Mariner, check out this thread http://rib.net/forum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=3891 . I have put some on there via work.
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Old 09 February 2004, 16:37   #8
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One thing you should always check on Merc/
Mariners is the Fuel pump Diaphragms they recomend they should be changed once a year or every 150 hours.

When we service outboards the carbs get stripped and checked over (float heights etc) Fuel filters, gear oil, spark plugs, Anodes, water pump impellers, run the engines up on the dyno to check they are putting out the right power. We check timing either static or pick up etc etc. Grease all the bits clean them up and give them back.
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Old 09 February 2004, 17:21   #9
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I have always serviced my own engines. I race 2 stroke motorbikes and servicing of these would make the sport unaffordable, if I had to go to a dealer. The same goes for outboards. On the point of thread stripping and seized bolts, If you use a torque wrench then you should never strip a thread! If you cross thread, give your self a slap! As if you cannot turn it twice by finger, its not in straight. Finally bolts only sieze if they are not regularly turned and if insufficient grease is applied to the thread. Why pay a dealer when you can learn to do it yourself? Also the more you do with your engine, the more chance you can remedy a problem out at sea
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Old 10 February 2004, 14:53   #10
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Just been reading some stuff about the EPA/other pollution regs. The owner of the outboard is responsible for getting the engine properly maintained so the emissions stay within the engines certified limits. Not really a problem at the moment but as modern engines get older and regs get tighter might cause problems with home servicing.
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Old 10 February 2004, 15:34   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by MadMat
I've met very few people I trust enough to service any of my engines.
Yes indeed, a veritable cottage industry if ever I saw one, paralleled only by the incompetence of the British motorcycle dealer network.

My Honda outboard had its 10-hour service last year at my local Honda main dealer and as I stood chatting to the mechanic afterwards he managed to spot a grease nipple he'd missed on the steering pivot mechanism - I wouldn't have minded so much but there are only two on whole engine! Furthermore, when I took it out on the water for the first time the engine kept stalling because they'd balanced the carbs but hadn't bothered to run the engine up and re-adjust the tick-over idle speed. Oh, and they charged me £112 for the privilege. The mechanic also admitted he'd never been sent on a Honda training course in the two years he'd been at the dealership.

Anyway, very short-sighted policy on their behalf, because they won't get any more servicing business off me, let alone be invited to quote for a new engine when I eventually upgrade my RIB. And, of course, we've all heard the old adage that if you receive poor service you tell an awful lot more people than when you've received good service.
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Old 11 February 2004, 10:30   #12
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speaking (as we were) of water pump impellors, anyone know know where it is and how to get to it on a suzuki 70 4-stroke. it's something I'd like to have a look at.
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Old 11 February 2004, 19:14   #13
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Water pump normaly just above the gear box in the lower leg, you normaly drop the gearbox 4 or 6 bolts and find it sitting on top, with the drive shaft going thru it.

Nick.
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Old 12 February 2004, 05:55   #14
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Thanks Nick
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